Professional Writing and Communication


Professional Writing and Communication (PWC), an interdisciplinary program, articulates principles of human communication and considers the way these principles apply in professional, personal, artistic, academic and public settings. PWC specializes in non­fiction prose, including creative non-fiction. Students learn fundamentals of excellent prose by writing and editing autobiographical narratives in Expressive Writing, the entry course, and go on in upper level courses to extend their learning through diverse, self-designed writing projects. Students develop style and voice and learn to base their writing in original research. PWC offers opportunities to explore communications in a range of disciplines.

How do PWC classes work?

PWC features small (maximum 35), interactive workshop-style classes. Students work with hands-on, real-world writing, project design, research, editing, document design and publishing. Many students publish work while they are in the program. Courses encourage students to recognize the subject matter in their own lives and communities. Students learn to combine original primary research (research that may come out of situations students know and observe directly) with secondary research (research published by others). Most courses operate with a portfolio system – that is, students continually edit and revise work as they build the quality of their writing portfolios. 

Programs and specializations

  • Offered as a Major (to be combined with one other Major) or as a Minor

Why choose U of T Mississauga for Professional Writing & Communication?

  • PWC is a distinctive U of T Mississauga program, found only on this U of T campus.
  • The program features outstanding faculty, innovative teaching, internship opportunities, publication opportunities, hands-on editing and an excellent record of graduate placements in graduate and professional schools, and writing careers. 

Affiliated student clubs

  • Mindwaves, a magazine of new writing distributed across three University of Toronto campuses and in bookstores.

What high school preparation do I need?

Six Grade 12 U or M courses including English (ENG4U).

This refers to courses from the Ontario Curriculum. We will accept equivalent courses from other academic systems. For details, visit

What courses do I take?

The first PWC course students take is: WRI203H5: Expressive Writing. This course is a prerequisite for all other PWC courses. 

Other writing courses students may take include:

  • WRI303H5: Specialized Prose
  • WRI307H5: Science and Writing 
  • WRI310H5: Social and Professional Languages WRI320H5: History and Writing 
  • WRI325H5: Community and Writing 
  • WRI327H5: Writing in Social Media: The Impact of Web 2.0
  • WRI330H5: Oral Rhetoric 
  • WRI340H5: Critical Reading and Listening 
  • WRI360H5: Finance and Writing 
  • WRI365H5: Editing: Principles and Practice
  • WRI370H5: Writing about Place 
  • WRI375H5: Writing about Environment & Ecology 
  • WRI380H5: Documentary Scripting and Production for Electronic Media 
  • WRI390H5: Independent Studies 
  • WRI395H5: Re-languaging: Writing Across Cultures and Languages 
  • WRI410H5: Professional Writing and Communication Internship I 
  • WRI411H5: Professional Writing and Communication Internship II 
  • WRI420H5: Making a Book 
  • WRI430H5: Journalistic Investigation 

Electives from other disciplines that students may take include: 

  • ANT204Y5: Sociocultural Anthropology 
  • ANT206H5: Culture and Communication: Introduction to Linguistic Anthropology 
  • CCT260H5: Web Culture and Design
  • CCT354H5: Theory and Practice for Documentary Film Making  
  • HSC300H5: Health Sciences Communication 
  • HSC302H5: Biocommunication Visualization 
  • LIN200H5: Introduction to Language 
  • PHL247H5: Critical Reasoning 
  • PHL350H5: Philosophy of Language 
  • PSY315H5: Language Acquisition 
  • PSY374H5: Psychology of Language
  • SOC309H5: Sociology of Mass Communication 

After graduation

Graduating students leave the program with substantial portfolios that demonstrate their abilities and accomplishments. Employers, graduate schools and professional schools embrace the writing credential PWC offers. A PWC degree adds value to other professional and academic credentials. 

PWC graduates take their specialized education and experience into many areas: 

  • freelance writing and editing
  • book publishing
  • magazine writing and editing
  • journalism, including print, television and radio
  • web communications
  • graduate studies in Professional Writing, journalism, history of media, communications, creative writing
  • professional schools in law, medicine, journalism, education, biotechnology, business
  • technical and scientific writing
  • business, public sector work, environmental organizations

For more information

Lisa Peden
Student Advisor